Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Restaurant review in Stratford, Ontario

I am told that many decades ago when the Stratford Theatre Festival first started in 1953 the choices of restaurants in this small community of 30,000, it was much less then hovering around 12,000, was rather limited. People often came by special trains organized by the Toronto Telegraph Newspaper. You had dinners offered by the Parkview United Church ladies, good, solid food but nothing fancy. There was also the famous Golden Bamboo Chinese restaurant now close for the last 10 years, fondly remembered and still up for sale, and maybe one other diner. In such a small community people had meals at home or went to Kitchener or Guelph for more choices on special occasions.

Today Stratford offers a huge array of fine gourmet dining, the only thing is that if you have evening theatre tickets for a show at 8pm this means having dinner at 5pm and making a table reservation a week or more in advance. If on the other hand you are willing to wait until 7:30pm for dinner then the town is yours as most people will be gone to one of the four main theatre venues.  This is why we enjoyed our B&B so much. At the Stratford Whitehouse www.stratfordwhitehouse.com we had an efficiency apartment with full kitchen, so we could cook meals, easy enough and relaxing.

We also took in Matinées so a show at 2pm is over by 5pm and then its time for cocktails and dinner afterwards.

We went for coffee at Revel Café revelcoffee.com, a very nice coffee shop, modern and funky decor. We had meals at Mercer Hall, www.mercerhall.com great food made from Ontario produce with a European flair and style, I had one of the best steaks ever, reminding me of Tuscany beef and Florence.

We also went to Raja Indian Restaurant, rajafinedining.ca/stratford the service was great, so were the drinks and food. Keystone Alley Café keystonealley.com had the nicest staff and great food.

Pazzo, the Italian restaurant www.pazzo.ca is not to be missed, the Chef Gilad Rozenberg makes his own Burrata in house, I could not believe it, this type of cheese is from the same family as the Mozzarella with the difference that the inside is soft and creamy. In Italy it is made only in the Puglia Region (the heel of the  boot). Their pizzas are also authentic Italian nothing North American about them.

Down the Street downthestreet.ca we went to for cocktails and meals, the kitchen is open late for after theatre crowds. Finally Features restaurant is the best for a great breakfast.

We also went to The Barkery (like in Bark Bark) its a healthy bakery for Dogs. See the webpage at
www.thebarkery.ca Their cookies are so good people eat them, all natural, hypo allergenic, etc...

Now I would be remiss if I did not mention Tim Horton the Canadian doughnut chain available everywhere I am told, sigh....
Well on this trip the infamous Dr. Spo who I am told is the North American Authority on Tim Horton doughnut (see Guinness book of world records) was with us and of course he waxes poetic about Tim Horton. I thought we would need the OPP (Ontario Provincial Police) to restrain him when we pass by the local doughnut shop on Ontario street. Apparently it is his considered medical opinion that humans can actually live off a diet of Tim Horton doughnut. It may be true if I look at our Prime Minister S. Harper who is know as a fan of the doughnut chain, he is known to have missed meetings at the United Nation General Assembly in New York to be at the opening of a new Tim Horton.

Though strangely enough, despite the fact that Dr. Spo speaks non-stop of Tim Horton, I never actually seen him eat one. Strange, very strange.


  1. I am a witness that the good Dr Spo did, in fact, visit said Tim Horton's for a chocolate dipped 'sugar-fried-cake-of-death' one morning.

    I was not familiar with Burrata prior to this trip but discovered it on Tuesday evening. How can you not love cheese stuffed inside cheese?

    1. The horror sugar fried? How does he keep his girlish figure? LOL!

    2. by eating mentioned sugar fried cakes only once a year, when in canada.

  2. Oh, don't you be dissin' Timmie's, Laurent. That's like spitting on the flag!

    1. I think they put stuff in their food and this is how they control the minds of Canadians.

  3. #1 - you have a nice sense of humor
    #2 - I see you can't tell a straight story, so don't waste time.
    #3 - My word is apodictic, so not to be questioning me.
    #4 - if you say there are TH's in Ottawa I will come for a personal inspection.

  4. #1 I know often people comment on my great sense of humour.
    #2 I do not understand what you mean? Am puzzled.
    #3 apodictic Necessarily or demonstrably true; incontrovertible. Are you kidding me? Such a statement, I see the Oh, là,là nature of your personality shining through here.
    #4 Do come for a visit.

    1. When ever you like, though it is nicer in the summer time from 1 June to 30 September. Winter is pleasant also during December for all the lights around Parliament for Xmas. Let's talk.

    2. It is a lovely thought to consider, a winter visit.